Wafer Costs: Out of Control or Not?

Wafer Costs: Out of Control or Not?
by Paul McLellan on 01-01-2013 at 8:30 pm

I didn’t attend the International Electronic Device Meeting (IEDM) earlier this month, but there have been a lot of reports on the inter webs especially about 20nm and 14nm processes. Some of this is really geeky stuff but I think that perhaps the most interesting thing I’ve read about is summarized in this chart:

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Waiting or EUV – Another View on the ReRAM Roadmap

Waiting or EUV – Another View on the ReRAM Roadmap
by Ed McKernan on 11-05-2012 at 9:03 pm

Image RemovedIt is ‘Quarterly’ financial report time for many companies and one can occasionally find some interesting snippets in the transcripts of the calls which normally accompany these announcements. For example, SanDisk appear to have an encouraging quarter, reversing sales declines seen through Q1 and Q2. However,… Read More


Traditional Model of Funding Semiconductor Equipment is Broken?

Traditional Model of Funding Semiconductor Equipment is Broken?
by Paul McLellan on 08-07-2012 at 7:30 pm

Image RemovedAt Semicon a few weeks ago the big news was that Intel was making a big investment in ASML as a way of funding two development programs: extreme ultra-violet (EUV) and 450mm wafers. This week TSMC announced that they would join the program too, committing 275M Euros over a five year period. They are also taking a 5% stake… Read More


The Future of Lithography and the End of Moore’s Law!

The Future of Lithography and the End of Moore’s Law!
by Paul McLellan on 07-24-2012 at 10:35 pm

Image RemovedThisblog with a chart showing that the cost of given functionality on a chip is no longer going to fall is, I think, one of the most-read I’ve ever written on Semiwiki. It is actually derived from data nVidia presented about TSMC, so at some level perhaps it is two alpha males circling each other preparing for a fight.… Read More


EUV: No Pellicle

EUV: No Pellicle
by Paul McLellan on 07-22-2012 at 10:00 pm

There’s a dirty secret problem about EUV that people don’t seem to to be talking about. There’s no pellicle on a EUV mask. OK, probably you have no idea what that means, a lot of jargon words, nor why it would be important, but it seems to me it could be the killer problem for EUV.

Image RemovedIn refractive masks, … Read More


EUV Masks

EUV Masks
by Paul McLellan on 07-17-2012 at 11:00 pm

This is really the second part to this blog about the challenges of EUV lithography. The next speaker was Franklin Kalk who is CTO of Toppan Photomasks. He too emphasized that we can make almost arbitrarily small features but more and more masks are required (not, that I suspect, he would complain being in the mask business). For EUV… Read More


Extreme Ultra Violet (EUV)

Extreme Ultra Violet (EUV)
by Paul McLellan on 07-15-2012 at 8:15 pm

Image RemovedEUV is the great hope for avoiding having to go to triple (and more) patterning if we have to stick with 193nm light. There were several presentations at Semicon about the status of EUV. Here I’ll discuss the issues with EUV lithography and in a separate post discuss the issues about making masks for EUV.

It is probably… Read More


Intel Opens a New Front with ASML

Intel Opens a New Front with ASML
by Ed McKernan on 07-10-2012 at 4:00 pm

Image RemovedBehind great humor often lies irony. In the midst of a struggle by the European Union to extract $1.3B from Intel in an ages old Anti-Trust case, the latter makes a strategic move to embolden the Dutch firm ASML to accelerate the development of 450mm and EUV and thus save a continental jewel. What now say EU? When disfunction… Read More


With EUVL, Expect No Holiday

With EUVL, Expect No Holiday
by Beth Martin on 03-02-2011 at 1:12 pm

For a brief time in the 1990s, when 4X magnification steppers suddenly made mask features 4X larger, there was a period in the industry referred to as the “mask vendor’s holiday.” The party ended before it got started with the arrival of sub-wavelength lithography, and we all trudged back to the OPC/RET mines. Since then, the demands… Read More